Exposé Online banner

Blackmore's Night — Dancer and the Moon
(Frontiers Records FR CD 605, 2013, CD)

by Jon Davis, Published 2013-11-10

Dancer and the Moon Cover artBefore hearing Dancer and the Moon, I was familiar with Blackmore's Night only by reputation, primarily from the reviews my fellow Exposé staff members have written about their previous releases. So I knew to expect a mix of contemporary (defined loosely) rock and medieval sounds. Now, after listening to it a fair number of times, I'm still torn how to feel about it. On the one hand, there is great appeal in these supremely catchy melodies, the clean beauty of Candice Night's voice, and the skill of the instrumental work. There is a reason that folk and classical music have retained their popularity to some degree over centuries of change — a good melody can last, if not forever, a really long time. And given my fondness for some previous meldings of medieval music and rock (Gryphon, Philip Pickett), there was a chance this would burrow into my heart. The other hand presents a "but," and that "but" is: but the performances are so precise and polished that they sound calculated. This in itself is not enough to disqualify an album — there are plenty of supremely polished albums that I love — so I'll just say that for me the balance tips mostly to the positive side, if not completely over. For those who haven't heard this band before, they remind me of Renaissance with a bit more rock and a leaning towards older styles than the Romantic era favored by Annie Haslam and company. Several of these tracks have a Russian tinge to them, which Renaissance also did. The beautiful tones of Ritchie Blackmore's mandola, hurdy-gurdy, and nyckelharpa add a nice color to the tunes even when they're not the prime focus. Even if you're not on your way to an SCA gathering, it's worth checking out.

Filed under: New releases, 2013 releases

Related artist(s): Blackmore's Night

Latest news

2018-06-05
Koenjihyakkei Seeks Funding for New Album – It's been quite a few years since the last new studio album by the amazing Koenjihyakkei. Now they are preparing Dhormimviskha for worldwide release, and they're asking fans to pre-order via a Kickstarter campaign to help it happen. » Read more

2018-05-14
Glenn Branca RIP – Experimental guitarist and composer Glenn Branca has died at the age of 69. He was known for compositions featuring large ensembles of guitars, and for the use of feedback. He founded his band Theoretical Girls in the mid-70s as an art-punk answer to what he saw as the increasing commercialization of punk music. His compositions were highly influential, with such figures as David Bowie, Thurston Moore, and John Lurie among his fans. » Read more

2018-04-05
OBEY Convention XI Set for May 24-28 in Halifax – As the 2018 festival season rapidly approaches, we’d like you to be aware of a real treasure of diverse and creative music that’s going to take place in Halifax, Nova Scotia, next month. The OBEY Convention is on its 11th outing, and features a wide range of artists from around the world. From avant-industrial noise to experimental takes on Classical Chinese music, from chamber jazz to doom metal, from ambient soundscapes to Canadian First Nations drumming, you’d be hard pressed to find a festival with more variety in sound anywhere in the world. » Read more

2018-04-04
Close to the Rain Festival in Bergen Announces Lineup – Now in its second year, the Close to the Rain Festival of progressive music is scheduled to take place in Bergen, Norway, on June 7 - 9. They've got an amazing slate of bands lined up, including such powerhouses as Anekdoten, Major Parkinson, Arabs in Aspic, Tusmørke, and many more. » Read more

2018-03-01
Seaprog 2018 Artist Announcements Raise Festival's Profile – Seattle's Seaprog festival has been going since 2013, and the 2018 edition features a slate of artists that's sure to bring more attention to the event. Cheer-Accident, Bubblemath, and Free Salamander Exhibit are in the first round announcement of performers. In keeping with their tradition of focusing on regional artists, they will also present a number of artists from Washington and Oregon. [Edit: Just added: Inner Ear Brigade] » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Pre-Med - The Truth About Us – Pre-Med is a space rock band that formed in 2004 by Danny Faulkner and Hawkwind’s bassist Alan Davey. The Truth About Us is their second release and it features the talents of Eamon...  (2008) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues